An Invitation!

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Dear Friends,

I would like to invite you to share in a dream with me, a very special event re-imagining the concert experience for the whole family —

On Sunday May 11th, join us at the National Opera Center (330 7th Avenue in Manhattan) for two parallel concerts:
at 11am, Ljova and Pinky Swear Brigade will split the bill
with   Face The Music                                          [Tickets]
at 4pm, Ljova and the Kontraband will split the bill
with our friends Banda Magda                         [Tickets]

Each act will perform two sets — one geared towards adults, the other towards children — and since our concerts coincide with Mother’s Day, both concerts will finish with a potluck meal – see a detailed schedule below!

Why do we need a parallel concert for kids and adults?

There are many reasons, but the most potent is that kids deserve an experience of their own, to respond to music and ask questions in an encouraging atmosphere. At the same time, adults deserve to explore the arts without worry of finding a babysitter, or whether the content would be kid-appropriate — you shouldn’t have to leave the kids at home. Performers need to find a way of communicating their art to audiences of all ages.

How will this work?

The unique quality of the National Opera Center is that it has two beautiful music rooms adjacent to each other. Two acts will present their sets in parallel. After intermission, audiences will switch rooms to take in the second set, following which we will celebrate with a potluck meal of your favorite dishes.  You and your children will each have two experiences to share.

Tell me more about the acts —

11am setTWO STRING BANDS —  Ljova and the Pinky Swear Brigade is comprised of the great violinists Zach Brock and Fung Chern Hwei, cellist Adam Fisher and Jordan Morton on bass, and yours truly on viola.  We will play some of my latest music for strings.    Face the Music is an amazing ensemble of teen musicians from the Special Music School which has become an essential part of the New York music scene.

4pm setA KONTRA and a BANDA —  Ljova and the Kontraband — featuring vocalist Inna Barmash, accordionist Patrick Farrell, Jordan Morton on bass and Mathias Künzli on percussion — has been my main band for over 8 years. We will be releasing our 2nd album, “No Refund on Flowers”.   Banda Magda is a project led by our friend Magda Giannikou, a great composer, vocalist/accordionist and giant entertainer.

What is the difference between the childrens’ set and the adults’ set?

Primarily, the childrens’ set will include an informal demonstration of the instruments, a period for questions and maybe even dancing along to the music. The childrens’ set will be staffed with volunteer parent chaperons. The adults’ set will be unchaperoned.

How does ticketing work?

Advance tickets are $20 per person, or $70 for a family of four. All proceeds go directly towards the musicians. Due to capacity regulations at this intimate venue, it is necessary to sell tickets in advance.

Grab tickets to the 11am concert (Ljova and Pinky Swear Brigade / Face the Music)
Grab tickets to the 4pm concert (Ljova and the Kontraband / Banda Magda)

Adults and children eight years or older can choose to attend either set — that said, you know your children best. If you want to enjoy music with your children, you’re welcome. If you are comfortable to leave your children in our hands, we welcome them, and you’ll be just in the next room over.


I’m an adult without kids – can I come?


What is the schedule?

10:30am – doors open in both rooms for the first concert
11am – set one  (Ljova and the Pinky Swear Brigade / Face the Music)
11:45am intermission
12:15pm set two  (Face the Music / Ljova and the Pinky Swear Brigade)
1pm potluck lunch

3:30pm doors open in both rooms for the second concert
4pm set one (Ljova and the Kontraband / Banda Magda)
4:45pm intermission
5:15pm set two (Banda Magda / Ljova and the Kontraband)
6pm potluck dinner

I have more questions –

of course! contact me here, or below.

Thank you!

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